Oscilloscope Laboratories announced this past week that documentary filmmaker Viktor Jakovleski’s Brimstone & Glory, an explosive — literally — look at the annual National Pyrotechnic Festival in Tultepec, Mexico, will be available on Mar. 13 as both DVD and Blu-ray product offerings.
The film debuted in March of 2017 at the annual True/False Film Festival in Columbia, Missouri and then proceeded to work the festival circuit and in the process piled an impressive list of wins, including Best Director (Documentary Features) and Best Documentary at the Austin Fantastic Fest and Best Documentary at the San Francisco International Film Festival. Along the way Oscilloscope got wind of Jakovleski’s work and picked it up for domestic theatrical and home entertainment release.
The film opened in selected arthouse venues this past October and arrives on Mar. 13 with an ARR of 137 days.
For ten days each year it is a glorious salute to all-things pyrotechnic — fireworks that is — in Tultepec. It is literally non-stop!! It is not without its risks as in 2016 the entire San Pablito Market in Tultepec went up, killing 42.
It is said, that of the roughly 90,000 residences of Tultepec, three-quarters are engaged in the business, craft and profession of fireworks (that leaves school kids and the elderly as the only ones not working in the trade)!
Each year the Festival sees both professionals and amateurs joining in, with the pièce de résistance being the parade of bulls around the town square. For weeks, even months, leading up to the parade, dozens of teams work on the construction and internal fireworks configurations of larger than life papier-mâché bulls, which come together in the annual parade and then are detonated in a fiery cataclysm that has to be seen to be believed! Each team tries to the top the others in their creative use of fireworks!
Jakovleski captures both the spirit of the Tultepec National Pyrotechnic Festival and the unbelievable sight of the bulls — it is a world that Fellini might have conjured up!
Bonus features include a video session with filmmaker Viktor Jakovleski, that is titled “Into the Bull Fire,” there is also a featurette titled “The Innovator,” which focuses on the work of artist Amauri Rafael Sanabria Urbán — he is considered among his peers to among the best fireworks technicians in the world — and a compilation of super slow-motion footage.
Brimstone & Glory is presented in Spanish with English subtitles.